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|Discipleship in the New Age II - Talks to Disciples - Introductory Remarks|
Some of you have really studied my previous instructions; others have given them a definitely cursory and perfunctory reading and have, in the last analysis, given no real thought to what I have said. Hence the need of reminding you of my major points prior to continuing with the next phase of the teaching. I would have you demonstrate you grasp of the subject and also your response to the effort I am making to instruct you. The best paper turned in was by W.D.S. because it was the most esoteric and touched upon the spiritual techniques of approach, insight and vision.
Incidentally, the question arises in your minds as to the method whereby I ascertain the content of your papers. Do I read them? Does A.A.B. read them and convey to me her impressions? Do I psychometrise them? None of these expresses my method or conveys the true mode of ascertaining. I do not read them; candidly, my brother, they do not warrant my taking the time. Does A.A.B. read them and then convey their significance to me? No, because as they filter through her mind and brain they would take on the powerful coloring of her thought, and from this she has ever carefully protected the group and all work she does as an intermediary between you and me. I do not psychometrise them. Let me endeavor to explain.
All detailed, outer forms are expressions of some subjective significance which is the cause of their appearance  and which can be discovered by those who can function in the world of meaning. These "foci of significance" carry a note, a vibration and a symbolic aspect which conveys to the trained mind of the esotericist far more than does the outer form of words convey meaning to the trained mind of the exoteric reader. One glance in the direction of the disciple with the thought in mind of ascertaining the value of his contribution in words, serves to bring into my line of vision the symbol which is the product of his written thought. This symbol may be and probably is distorted - a symbol without true balance; it will find its place upon some level of consciousness - astral, mental or spiritual - and its vibratory note will depend upon its "occult location." Forget not that the world of meaning and the world of outer forms express in essentiality the world in which multiplicity is reduced to simplicity, though this does not connote synthesis.
I wonder if any of you really grasp the extent of the effort which I have to make in order to reach your minds and teach you? When, for instance, I seek to send out these instructions I have to make the following preparation. First, I seek to ascertain the mental state and preparedness of the amanuensis, A.A.B., and whether the press of the other work upon which she is engaged in connection with the Plan of the spiritual Hierarchy permits of her right reception; for if the work is exerting extreme pressure and if she is occupied with urgent problems, it may be needful for me to wait until such time as circumstances give her the needed leeway both of time and strength, and of mental detachment. My own sphere of occult work must also come under consideration. Then, having established a rapport with her, I have three things to do.
First, I must gather the group of disciples as a whole into my aura and so gauge its general condition of receptivity - for that must determine the scope of the intended communication. Do you realize, my brothers, that as you extend your power to grasp the needed lessons and learn to train your minds to think in ever wider and more abstract terms, you draw from me a correspondingly adequate instruction?  The limitation to the imparted truth lies on your side and not on mine.
Second, I must isolate in my own consciousness the extent of the instruction, detaching myself from all other concerns and formulating the needed material into a thought-form which will be comprehensive, clear-cut, sequential in its relation to that which has already been imparted and which will lay the ground for the next instruction in due time.
Then third, I have to enter into that meditative condition, and that extraverted attitude which will enable me to pour out in a steady stream of constructive sentences which will express, to the mind of the amanuensis, the thought-form as I see it and build it. Putting it otherwise, I become creative with deliberation and endeavor to convey to the vision, to the mind and to the intellectual perception of A.A.B. an ordered presentation of the thought-form which embodies the lesson I desire the students to learn.
All this necessitates an expenditure of force and of time on my part which I feel is well warranted if the students - on their side - will prepare their minds, give the needed time, respond to the few requests I may make, and eventually cooperate with the work of bringing the edited instructions to the attention of aspirants and disciples everywhere and later to a wider public.
And let me here clarify also the question which is in your minds concerning the basis of the rapport between A.A.B. and myself. Earlier, I explained that a neophyte in an ashram is under the guidance of a more advanced chela and that "the Master is receiving regular reports (based on certain charts) from the senior disciple who has the neophyte in charge. It is in this way that many hierarchical relationships are established." (Discipleship in the New Age, Vol. I, page 723.) Several lives ago I was thus responsible for A.A.B. and hence the close link between us and the basic understanding and hence, therefore, the work we have been able to do together, even though I am not her Master. I explain this so that you can get some understanding of the interrelation  in ashramic work. We both belong to the Ashram of the Master K.H. I should like to add a further point: Reception such as that by A.A.B. is very rare indeed, not only because of the subject matter, but also because of the delicate sequence of ideas and the good choice of words; through this, she has made my books unique. She provides a standard which has no competition.
I assured you that I would deal with directness when teaching this group, owing to the urgency of the time and the need for the intelligent work of the trained disciple. Will you bear this in mind, and apply my suggestions to yourself and not to your group brothers? One of the most needed things for all disciples is to apply the teaching I may give to the idea of promoting and increasing their world service, thus rendering practical and effective in the world the teaching received and the stimulation to which they have been subjected.
In your personal instructions I will give you information as to the nature of your prevailing glamor. You may ask, what do I really mean by that phrase? I mean that aspect of thought, that quality of feeling, or that innate predisposition, which stands between you and the light of life and truth. There is in the life of every aspirant some outstanding tendency which acts as a limitation. This should receive due attention, leading to its eventual eradication. Most disciples and aspirants are too general in their handling of themselves and of their respective characters. Less diffused attention to the multiplicity of inherited habits and a more concentrated attention to a main, or at least a major, issue would result in a more rapid progress. What I shall therefore reveal to you as needing correction, adjustment or eradication should occupy your attention and be consciously dealt with during the coming year. Small notice need be paid to less important faults and errors; so oft faults that seem to you of paramount importance are of no moment in the eyes of the Masters. So much of the thought life of a disciple is occupied with a ceaseless interrogation and consideration of himself. What I shall say may be very brief and very scant. I am only seeking to indicate and not to direct;  I intend to point out, but not dictate to you, modes of eradication.
The times are serious and the world disciples are hard pressed. The Hierarchy and its affiliated groups are seeking active help and cooperation in the work of salvage. All disciples and aspirants are needed, and all can give much if the desire, the loving heart and the consecrated mind are united in service. I ask aid in the task of reconstruction. I ask for your consecrated help. I ask you to discipline yourselves anew, to hold back nothing, either objective or subjective. I ask for your whole-hearted cooperation in the work of world salvage.
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